Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill - Report (1st Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 3:30 pm on 3rd December 2018.

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Photo of Lord Kennedy of Southwark Lord Kennedy of Southwark Opposition Whip (Lords), Shadow Spokesperson (Home Affairs), Shadow Spokesperson (Communities and Local Government), Shadow Spokesperson (Housing) 3:30 pm, 3rd December 2018

My Lords, Amendments 1 and 2, in the names of the noble Baroness, Lady Jones, and the noble Lord, Lord Paddick, concern issues that we discussed in Committee. I listened carefully to the debate then and have listened carefully to the debate this afternoon. I have great respect for the noble Baroness but I want to make it clear that if she puts her amendment to the vote today and divides the House, we will not be with her. For me, the crucial word is “and”, which links new subsections (1A)(a) and (1A)(b). My noble friend Lord Harris of Haringey made the point that we need to read and consider both paragraphs together.

In Committee, the noble Lord, Lord Carlile, put it much more eloquently and succinctly than I can and he has done so again today. In Committee, he said:

“First, it recognises that even in this relatively gun-free”,

society,

“if someone expresses support in a certain way for a proscribed organisation, it may put some of our fellow citizens in mortal danger of their lives.”.

He went on:

“It does not criminalise the expression of support, rather it forbids and criminalises the expression of support on certain terms as set out in proposed new Section 1A(b), and that is the test of recklessness. Recklessness requires awareness of the risk that is being taken by the speaker”.—[Official Report, 29/10/18; cols. 1130-31.]

I agree very much with that position and, on the basis of it and what I have heard today, we will not support the noble Baroness in the Lobbies today. I did not accept at all her point that you can be supportive of an organisation but not support it. I think that if you are supportive of it, you do support an organisation. The clause as drafted is reasonable and, for me, it strikes the right balance.